Hand Tools Archive

To spring or not to spring, that is the ..

Derek Cohen (in Perth, Australia)
Hi Tom, Clint and Richard

Tom, now you tell me not to spring the joint!

It strikes me that one is damned whether one does or does not.

Springing a joint aids in tight joins at the ends. Not springing a joint (leaving them flat) may leave the centre vulnerable to rocking if the ends dry further. The advantage of flat sides is that one may create a rub joint.

On the other hand, a well made joint either way works well.

It did not occur to me that the thin panels should affect the choice of joint. I am not sure how the spring joint ended up as large as it did, since I spotted this immediately when later laying the boards together. As Richard noted, there should be a minimal amount to close. Over-enthusiasm with clamps is probably more of an issue with such thin boards owing to their small surface area. I was not aware how much pressure they were exerting at the time. I've not had to create such thin panels before. Not a timely learning experience!

Fortunately, I got the gap right on the other panel. It is strong. It now also has the added strength from the reinforcement on the inside, which removes the hollow ring from a thin panel. This will be reduced further when additional bracing for the drawer dividers go in.

Regards from Perth


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